The European Parliament website was briefly hit by a cyberattack claimed by pro-Russian hackers, officials said on Wednesday.
The website went offline shortly after EU lawmakers declared Russia a “state sponsor of terrorism” for its attacks on Ukraine.
MEPs emphasize that the deliberate attacks and atrocities committed by Russian troops and their proxies against civilians in Ukraine, the destruction of civilian infrastructure and other serious violations of international and humanitarian law amount to acts of terrorism and constitute war crimes. press release of the EU Parliament.
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“The European Parliament is under a sophisticated cyber-attack. A pro-Kremlin group has claimed responsibility,” parliament speaker Roberta Metsola wrote on Twitter.
The @Europarl_NL undergoes a sophisticated cyber-attack. A pro-Kremlin group has claimed responsibility.
Our IT experts resist and protect our systems.
This after we declared Russia a state sponsor of terrorism.
My answer: #SlavaUkraini
— Roberta Metsola (@EP_President) November 23, 2022
Spokesperson Jaume Duch said the website was targeted by a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack.
🚨 The availability of @Europarl_NL website is currently being affected from the outside by a lot of external network traffic.
This traffic is related to a Distributed Denial of Service (DDOS) attack.
EP teams are working to resolve this issue as soon as possible.
— Jaume Duch (@jduch) November 23, 2022
Such attacks disrupt the normal traffic of a targeted server, service or network by overwhelming the target or surrounding infrastructure with a deluge of Internet traffic.
They have also emerged as the tool of choice of Russian hacking groups like Killnetas a way to cause chaos and protest against European countries supporting Ukraine in the war.
“As geopolitical tensions flare, cyberattacks are increasingly seen as a viable tool in the arsenal of nation states,” said Oliver Pinson-Roxburgh, CEO of cybersecurity firm. Defence. comtold TNW.
“The attack on the European Parliament appears to have been specifically timed, with their systems being hit at a time of maximum demand guaranteed to attract the most attention from the watching world,” he added.
While MEP Rasmus Andresen noted that it is not yet certain whether the attack was directly related to the resolution on Russia, he stressed that parliament’s systems were “not sufficiently prepared”. reports.
“I hope that today’s events will lead us to better protect our data and our democracies, because it will certainly not be the last time we are victims of such attacks,” he said.
The number of cyber-attacks against EU institutions has been gradually increasing since 2018, raising concerns about the cyber vulnerabilities and defenses of the public sector.
“The lesson of this attack on the European Parliament should be adopted by all government and public organizations: prioritize improving cyber defenses to prevent disruptions in the delivery of vital services to citizens,” Pinson-Roxburgh noted.
“The failure of public sector organizations to protect services from bad actors will only further undermine public trust in institutions. Public sector organizations must plan for the long term, improve threat management systems and implement up-to-date education and awareness training for all personnel.”